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20121202
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of progress in washington towards a fix for the fiscal cliff. the only hopeful sign is that republicans and democrats are talking privately again. but they haven't worked out any of the big issues, including what to do about the nation's debt limit. washington will hit its borrowing limit early next year, darren gersh has the latest. >> reporter: sitting around the kitchen table with a middle class family in virginia, the president once again pressed for congress to avoid the fiscal cliff. >> if this family has a couple of thousand dollars less to spend, that translates into $200 billion of less consumer spending next year. and that's bad for businesses, large and small. >> reporter: behind the scenes, the two sides are talking again. but there was no progress in public. senators today fought over the debt limit, and ended up deadlocked over a bill to allow the president to automatically increase borrowing. >> he's shown what he is really after is unprecedented powers to spend taxpayer dollars without any limit at all. >> reporter: if the debt limit isn't raised, the country can't pay f
in the fiscal cliff negotiations. >> tom: that and more tonight on "n.b.r."! >> susie: the job market is proving to be surprisingly resilient. american employers hired 146,000 workers in november, much more than expected. and the unemployment rate fell to 7.7%, the lowest level since december of 2008. as erika miller reports, that wasn't the only surprise in today's report. >> reporter: almost no one on wall street saw this good news coming. there was every reason to think hiring would be weak last month. after all, many parts of the east coast are still recovering from devastation caused by superstorm sandy. >> i think the most likely explanation here is sandy's impact was significant but was so short-lived that it didn't extend to the sample period of the employment report which was the week that covered november 12. >> reporter: hiring was also supposed to be weak due to worries about the fiscal cliff. with $600 billion in automatic tax hikes and government spending cuts set to start next yer, why aren't more firms postponing hiring decisions? >> what we're hearing from businesses is that it
republicans are holding the global economy hostage over the fiscal cliff. >> susie: and apple shares get of the most widely owned stocks sees heavy trading. >> tom: that and more tonight on "n.b.r." >> susie: big job cuts today at one of the nation's biggest banks. citigroup announced it's slashing 4% of its staff; that works out to 11,000 jobs worldwide. the cuts will save the bank more than $1 billion a year in expenses. but they won't be cheap, resulting in a billion-dollar charge against fourth-quarter earnings. is this gloomy news from citi the beginning of other companies doing the same? suzanne pratt reports. >> reporter: 11,000 jobs are a lot of layoffs, even for a bank as huge as citi. and there could be more. that's because the monster firm is still struggling to recover from the great recession even though it has fired a lot of other workers in the last few years. the thing is, citi has a new c.e.o. in michael corbat, and experts say he's anxious to make his mark, even if that includes cutting staff. and the need to slim down is not ique to citi; it's indtry- wide. a financial
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